Tracked every step of the way — not just the modern traveler, but modern food on its travels from the farmfield to the table. New F.D.A. rules will add much tighter oversight to the American food supply, and I-S-U extension food-science specialist Sam Beattie says it’ll be the reponsibility of everybody after the farmer. What it will do is in any case where there might be “intentional adulteration” by an act of terrorism, the F.D.A. will be able to trace back where the food came from, and do it fast. Beattie says the change will not cost a lot of money. For consumers, it’ll be “seamless,” as the work will be on the processing and manufacturing side. Beattie says the U.S. food supply is already the safest in the world. “Think about that,” marvels Beattie. Even with the tons of food consumed on a daily basis in this country, he notes there are few outbreaks (of food-borne illness) and very few people get sick from our food, adding “It’s pretty impressive.” Beattie says almost all food processors already keep this kind of record — the new rules will just clafify that such records are required and might be checked. Outgoing secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson warned recently that an attack on the safety of the U.S. food supply is one tactic terrorists might use.
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